We are back in full throttle this fall at the Willie Mays Club House, and we are excited to be here! We had so much fun last year learning and building with the kiddos and are already having a great time after our first class.
We started off the day by circling up and getting to know a little bit about each other and the Tinkering School Goals. We were excited to see a couple of returning Tinkerers. One of our favorite parts of the Tinkering School program is how many kids come back for more Tinkering!
Then we jumped right into creating this session’s group agreements. The kids were thoughtful, generous and kind in their ideas about what agreements they want to make for their program. They focused on treating the tools and others with respect, being safe, and listening. Once they had listed everything they wanted to include they all signed (including the collaborators), giving their word to these agreements for the session.
After everyone signed, we started our tool training. Our Tinkering School tool training focuses on three commonly used tools - clamps, chop saw and drills. While we do use other tools in our program, we teach the kids how to use them on an as needed basis.
Kenneth and Kai were naturals at creating this clamp bridge. Part of our tool training often includes a challenge of some sort for the kids to practice what they learned and demonstrate proficiency with the tools. This year we had the students make a bridge with clamps and wood. Marissa, Giselle and Blanca too crushed this challenge and had fun doing it!
Next we moved on to drill practice. Jadarius discovered the difference between the chuck drill he was using and the quick release drills Marissa and Giselle had, and the benefits of having a drill that can fit a variety of bits.
Then everyone had a chance to practice what they learned and attach two pieces of wood together. Richae and Keyonie worked along side each other, learning from each other’s mistakes and collaborating when they needed help.
And last, and certainly not least we learned about the chop saw. This tool is SO exciting (and sometimes a little scary) for many of our Tinkerers. They get to be acknowledged with the trust of handling a REAL power tool, and given the opportunity to take responsibility for their safety (with adult supervision). This is an opportunity for our students that they don’t get many other places in life, and part of what makes this program so incredibly special. And yes, Richae totally rocked it!
Join us next time to find out what special project we will be working on this session and see all the photos from the day here. Beep beep!